By GHK Lall
Kaieteur News – I am of two minds about this matter of public officials using the pandemic to avoid media scrutiny (KN May 4). They definitely have much to evade, plus a scarcity of truths to offer. So, they find any excuse to hide, with the pandemic being the best thing around as all-purpose bedsheet to wraparound their embarrassing nakedness. Speaking for myself, I prefer silence than to hear more subtle deceptions and outright falsehoods from this leader and that one; I have little patience with leadership evasions and obvious leadership omissions, one of which is their necessary press presences to face the people and tell them the facts and all of them, not just what is helpful to their tomfooleries. Guyanese may never have their fill of the foolishness of local cult leaders and their juniors, but I have no use for them; and this is whether they are from government (mainly) or the opposition, which is so invisible that its real people cannot be counted and real positions unsteady as to substances and unknown quantity. This disturbs.
I am amazed that Guyanese of a certain demographic found their voices and pens to vent their outrage over Opposition MP, Ms. Amanza Walton-Desir’s position about “mentally lazy.” I stated my position earlier on where I stood with the attorney and MP’s statement. But the more I absorbed the sharp reactions from those claiming to be offended, the more I would be encouraged to observe those same energies displayed in other areas. I offer two examples from Guyanese life.
First, four Guyanese men, three young and one much older, were murdered in very gruesome fashion. Two were black, two Indian. I speak of the Cotton Tree mystery and the related murders. Our leaders have not been only “mentally lazy” they have been paralyzed by inaction, by careful distancing and by silence that is now impenetrable and part of the regular routine on the important things in this country. Cotton Tree transfixed this nation, it crippled the West Berbice area for many long hours and days and it exposed the rawness and nakedness that reside just below the surface in this unsteady society. Yet there are no protests, no outrage, no pressure and pushback at the mental sloth and leadership disappearances that have followed in the wake of these ghastly killings. We are all vulnerable, and yet there is comfort, even what I would describe as quietly and knowingly aiding and abetting the leadership laziness and mental shiftiness that have become part of governance in Guyana. We are selectively outraged; become racially charged; and emotionally distressed in rank partisan ways and when it suits our purpose. This is disturbing and what heaves this society about restlessly and endlessly.
Along the same lines, there is no other way but to characterise the management of our oil by government leaders as mentally lazy. I would say it is deliberate and an indication of powerful men possessing dark secrets to hide. Sinister secrets about oil and its handling, at the leadership level, which is why they are tongue-tied and seek every opportunity to hide behind veils of what I would call obvious oil vices. Leaders are purposely lazy with facts and figures and truths on the biggest thing to hit Guyana and nobody is calling them out and rushing forward to speak up and write. That is, because it is their own, so anything goes. Nothing is too low, too dirty, or too criminal, so as to be condemnable and in the sharpest manner. After all, the fortunes of every Guyanese are tied up in how this oil plays out. In other words, the anticipated benefits could be lost and never experienced when leaders engage in slick word games, and deceive at will. Despite this, only a few lonely voices are raised in objection. Walton-Desir was flayed for her failure to sense the sharks waiting, but terribly erring leaders are given an honour guard and comforted when they cheat the nation and mislead Guyanese.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.)
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